LA Chargers: Tyrod Taylor and the 2 transition quarterbacks in team history
By Jason Reed
LA Chargers transition quarterbacks: John Friesz and the quarterback carousel (1988-91)
So this era in LA Chargers history actually had several different quarterbacks starting under center for the team and did not have the one traditional transition quarterback like Taylor is meant to be. However, this period was sandwiched between two long-term starters in Dan Fouts and Stan Humphries, so it absolutely can be regarded as a transition period.
The year after Fouts was not great. The Chargers had three different quarterbacks start under center that season and the team finished last in the AFC West with a 6-10 record. With the quarterback issues in mind, the team selected Billy Joe Tolliver in the second round of the 1989 NFL Draft.
However, like with Herbert, the team wanted a veteran to start instead of rushing Tolliver and traded for Jim McMahon, who was a Super Bowl-winning quarterback and one-time Pro Bowler to that point in his career.
However, just like his previous teams, McMahon was a negative locker room presence and ultimately only started 11 games for the Bolts, thrusting Tolliver into the starting job.
Tolliver started the final five games and started 14 for the Bolts the following year. After a mediocre 1990 season which saw him throw only 16 touchdowns with 16 interceptions, the Chargers turned the starting gig over to John Friesz, who was the last of the transitional carousel.
Friesz was not any better, throwing for only 2,896 yards and 12 touchdowns with 15 interceptions. After getting hurt in the following preseason, the team traded for Stan Humphries, who is the only quarterback to pilot the Chargers to the Super Bowl.